112: The 9 Productivity Tools I Use Everyday to Run my Wedding Venue
In today’s episode of She Creates Business a Podcast for Wedding Pros I’m sharing the 9 Productivity Tools I use every day as a wedding venue owner.
I like to see information in one easy document. If you’re like me, you can get the full list, cost of each productivity tool and examples of how I use them in the PDF I created for this episode here.
No need to enter your email to grab this free goodie, just click here and download my friend!
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9 Productivity Tools I Use Everyday as a Wedding Venue Owner
Dubsado is my CRM (Customer Relationship Management) System for Vista View Events. I use it to manage new leads and couples who have booked my venue.
Here’s a basic overview of the functions I use in Dubsado:
· All Contracts (Including delivery and signatures)
· Invoicing and collecting Payment (my Dubsado account is integrated with Stripe).
· Automated Emails and Reminders for every step of a couple’s engagement.
o Example: I have a workflow setup in Dubsado to email a client 65 days before their wedding to remind them to book their ceremony rehearsal and turn in their Special Event Insurance.
Grammarly is a spell check and grammar tool that automatically corrects your spelling and grammar. It’s a Chrome browser extension that works ANYWHERE you type on your computer…not just in word processors.
For example, I use a design program called Canva for designing my own social media graphics and Grammarly even works when I’m in Canva!
3.) Google Calendars on My iPhone
This mama cannot remember anything and, even though I love a beautiful paper planner, I NEVER check them consistently. I live by what’s on my Google Calendars (I have multiple) and they’re all on my phone.
My Google Calendars are connected to my Gmail accounts of course and to be honest, have email on my phone became an addiction. I was refreshing my inboxes every few minutes (gross, don’t be like me).
To kick my email habit, but keep my calendars on my phone, I turned the email function OFF of my iPhone so only the calendars are active.
Every few hours during the day if I’m on the go I’ll turn the email function back on to check in and respond to important emails and then I turn it off again! It’s been a total game changer for me!
Price: Free or Gmail for Business Account: $15/month (this is the one I use so I can have those @vistaviewevents.com email addresses).
4.) iPhone Voice Recorder App
Surprise, I like to talk more than I like to write. I use the native voice recorder app on my iPhone for a variety of things:
· Recording notes from tours or final walkthroughs I’ve done at the venue. I remind myself if there’s anything I need to send to the couple or follow up on.
· I record ideas for blog posts, edits I want to make to our contracts, items that need to be repaired at the venue, etc.
Price: Free with any iPhone (Android users I’m sure you have one as well).
If you like setting goals you’ll actually achieve and want to uncover the things that REALLY matter to you, you’ll probably love Powersheets as much as I do.
Powersheets is an Intentional Goal Planner that comes in a 6-month or 12-month planner.
I love to see my goals and the big picture all in one place so I use the 12-month planner and their Goal Setting Stickers. 2019 Powersheets are launching on October 24th, 2018! Hooray!
Here’s a snippet about Powersheets from the Cultivate What Matters Website:
OUR PROVEN PROCESS - A simple three-part guided process that works:
· PowerSheets Prep Work: the first 35 pages help you uncover your unique goals and what matters most to you
· Intentional Action Plans: step-by-step action plan pages for each of your goals with S.M.A.R.T. starting steps
· Monthly Tending Pages: Tending pages to help you live out your goals and action plans each month!
6.) Text Expander
Text Expander is a communication knowledgebase that allows you to insert short snippets of text or full on paragraphs with just a few keystrokes.
I learned about Text Expander through my day job at Acuity Scheduling and quickly adopted it in my businesses as well because it’s a productivity game changer.
Like any software, setting up your snippets takes time but it’s 100% worth it.
Here’s an example of how I use Text Expander: I get the same email multiple times a day at Vista View Events from interested couples who want to know, “What’s included in our venue, how much does it cost, etc. etc.”
I’ve created a text expander that inserts an entire email with just four keystrokes. I personalize the answer with the lead’s name and a few other details and off it goes.
I can answer 6 emails in about 5 minutes with well-thought out, informative answers and personalization.
7.) Dropbox and Google Drive
I use both Dropbox and Google Drive for backup storage of pretty much everything in my business and for large files I don’t want to save on my computer.
Examples: After weddings photographers are great about sharing the gallery of photos from the wedding so we have visual content to use on our website, blog posts, social media, etc.
I store all of our galleries, filed by couple name, in Dropbox and Google Drive so I have it in two places and those huge files are not downloaded onto my desktop.
We have a “digital magazine” called The Wedding Experience Guide that we send to all of our leads (it’s also on our website). Instead of attaching a large PDF file to our emails we store The Wedding Experience Guide in Google Drive and just hyperlink to the file within the email.
Price: Dropbox $10/month for 1TB of data or Free. Google Drive is Free.
Voxer is a walkie talkie app and is available for iOS and Android.
I use this app to communicate with other vendors and people in my business and personal circles.
It’s more personalized than text messages and let’s be honest, sometimes it’s easier to answer a question by speaking two sentences than having to type 2 paragraphs in a text message.
Heads up: I DO NOT use Voxer with our clients or couples
This is the online scheduling system I use to book tours, final walkthroughs and ceremony rehearsals at the venue.
I add the times I’m available to perform the above meetings to Acuity and simply send a link to my clients when they’re ready to book. The client picks the date and time that works best for them and we both get appointment confirmation and reminder emails.
I DO NOT waste time going back and forth in emails about what days/times work best for people because it’s unnecessary. 9/10 clients will pick a time that’s on my calendar.
If the client truly needs a time that isn’t on my calendar, of course I’ll make an exception but that’s the key…it’s an exception….not the rule.
My Tour Calendar is available on my website so leads can book a tour any time day or night.
Final Walkthroughs and Ceremony Rehearsals are for booked couples only so those are “private appointment types” in Acuity and I hyperlink those in my automated workflows that I have setup in Dubsado (#1 on this list!).
***Affiliate Note: Every item on this page is something I use in my business. If you purchase or sign up for a resource mentioned on this page, I may be compensated financially or with free product.